Introducing all of your RAJEN teams. Most of these heroes hold items that will help us make it to the end. If you see them, help them along their way. If you are a robot, I pray you never see them.
Team – Serpentine:
It was on a museum-sponsored expedition to Egypt where noted electrical engineer, hacker, and outdoorsman Ryan first met Jane–a multilingual public relations expert, ex-NSA cryptologist, and long-distance runner. The two became fast friends while in search of ancient technologies, navigating untold dangers in the desert; from poisonous creatures to extreme conditions and hostile locals.
Returning from the expedition, they were eager set off once again for adventure and intrigue, travelling this time to the Peruvian Amazon to unlock the secrets of the Inca. What they found instead was a mysterious stranger alone in a cave at the base of the central mountain region. He had been living in complete isolation for many years. A man of few words, his background remained enigmatic though it was clear he’d had special ops training but had somehow fallen from grace, surviving many extreme escapes from peril.
Ryan and Jane were indoctrinated into his way of life and learned from him the sacred arts of surfing, hang-gliding, and sinking full-court Hail Mary hook shots. Rechristened #TeamSerpentine, their snake tattoos and eye patches mark them out as disciples of the Holy Order of Plissken.
Back in Chicago, #TeamSerpentine is uniquely trained to survive any scenario, including the impending robot apocalypse. While in the jungle, they leaned the truth about a powerful weapon that can knockout the new technological menace once and for all–but only if they both make it onto the human ship. As a pair they hold the key, so should one of them fall the other will swiftly sacrifice their own life to the other side, putting the weapon into the hands of the enemy.
Human and robot alike should fear the destruction that #TeamSerpentine can wield. How they ultimately mete it out will be determined on September 15th.
Team Serpentine’s Item:
While in the jungle, the strange old man told #TeamSerpentine of a system of satellites ringing the Earth, each with the power to generate targeted electromagnetic pulses which can knock out any electrical system in their blast radius. With the proper geosynchronous device and trigger, these could be re calibrated to destroy all robots left on the planet’s surface in one fell swoop. Of course, in the hands of the enemy they could also be used to swat the last human ship out of the sky like a fly.
The old man’s own detonate had been destroyed in a previous expulsion of the satellite’s power, but with Ryan’s engineering know-how, #TeamSerpentine was able to reconstruct the device with an added fail-safe–the triggering mechanism can be removed from the targeting computer. Only with both parts together can the weapon be activated.
Ryan carries the targeting computer and Jane carries the triggering mechanism. Will they both make it to the ship alive and be humanity’s greatest boon? Or will they be the legendary heroes of the AI who brought about the extinction of man with the push of one button?
Team – The StitchPunks!
Before the machines took over, we were created to combat and draw back their forces. machines with souls they called us… but we are much more than that! We are the ones who will save the human race. We are closer to being human than those cold metal monsters! It’s our last chance, come the end of night we will fight to the last stitchpunk!
The StitchPunks’ item:
My understanding is that each stitchpunk is sort of an item unto itself!
Team – Wendy and the Lost Boys: (May have already been taken out by the robots?)
John’s lost his mind. That sophisticated, verbose, and, above all else, /rational/ scientist’s brain of his has softened. Baby brother has sprouted a conscience! If this were not the opposite of the expected results of a run-in with the humanity-thieves chasing us, I would have grown suspicious. We’ve picked up another lost boy. Were this not a third mouth for me to feed, I would be proud. At least we can starve nobly.
“Wendy ((Hope Bias))! Look here!” John ((David Vandendorpe)) exclaimed too loudly for comfort as we took our daily break to search the rubble for food.
I was looking at something, alright. However, my something was the complete opposite of John’s something. John’s something? A guy about our age flying solo and looking rattled. My something(s): five beings with souls as empty as the tin can in my hand.
“Run!” John added, shoving me into an alley with all his might. John’s something (“Miguel Rodriguez”) followed, gaining on and eventually passing us. To his credit, he led us to a safe nook and seemed pleased enough that we’d made it. To his discredit, he left us to lose the ‘bots on our own. Once safe, I exchanged a winded and terse “Hello” with the stranger while John welcomed him like a brother and invited him to join us. Later, I heard John whisper to Miguel that I do make a good substitute mother but only display that tendency by the thimble-full. The fellow did not seem reassured. I don’t know what it says for my tenuous grip on humanity that I flinched more at the “substitute mother” part than its Spartan nature.
And here we are, huddled around the Trial 1 Nascent Culture – Bio Luminescent Lifeform (T1NC-BLL). John keeps this little bottle of self-replicating, light- and heat-emitting green goo in his pocket. John had worked with the group of researchers currently sending promises of everlasting humanity through the underground. He had lost interest of airship-building (and nearly everything else, I might add) in favor of uncovering the secrets of this…thing…he had discovered. His former bosses knew of the anaerobic lifeform’s properties and had sent for John and his pet as part of the escape plan. The little organisms will be indispensable in our new lunar environs, devoid as they are of the necessities for fire. Even so, the damn thing makes me uneasy. I swear I can make out a fiendish little grin bubbling up in its shimmering green depths every now and again.
I really should not be so down in the mouth: my health and emotions (so many thimbles!) are intact. Still, I recognize my standing as the slowest member of this group. John is quick, and Miguel is clearly faster than either of us, though perhaps road-weary. We have his allegiance for now, but for how long? John is telling him about his task of taking the T1NC-BLL to the airship. Miguel will surely recognize John (or at least the bottle of grinning goo) as vital to his survival. Me? Not so much. Then there’s John. He is compassionate for now, but should his mission be threatened, will the stoic, utilitarian brother return? Scrawny little me will be dead weight.
Team Wendy’s Item:
Team — Brains over Bronze:
A costumed secretive team of two, Kara Ryan, and Jonathan Rubens.
Brains over Bronze item:
What have brains need of items? None! Is it not items that wrecked us?
TEAM – The Order of the Rusted Rivet:
We are what remains of “The Order of the Rusted Rivet”. Our origins can be traced back to the 1950s, when our glorious leader (who’s name has been lost to history) was sitting in a theater watching “Forbidden Planet” and realized he was gazing on the form of our destruction in Robby the Robot. Since then, he dedicated his life to documenting every appearance of robotic life in fiction and in real life, convinced that when the robot attack came, he could draw on his observations to fight back. And he would not rest until the robots were all dismantled and destroyed, their very rivets left to rust in mass robot graves.
For his incredible forethought (which some short-sighted fools have labeled insanity), we refer to him as “He Who Thought Ahead.” Operating from his central headquarters in Chicago, HWTA established bases throughout the country, creating a vast network of groups that knew enough about the future to fear it.
But the death of our leader, coupled with a growing acceptance of robots in our society, lead interest in our efforts to dwindle. Communications between the groups dried up. My comrades and I had spent the last few years continuing to document robot activity in Chicago, but had begun to have our doubts about the relevance of our quest. Perhaps that is why we were completely blindsided when the robots launched their attack. We scrambled to reconnect with our sister groups, but were met only with silence. Forced to conclude that we were all that remained, we were shocked to find a package delivered to our headquarters scant hours before we were set to escape the city. It came from someone who clearly remembered what our Order had once stood for, and trusted us and us alone to deliver what could be the salvation of our entire race…
Team ORR’s ITEM:
Our item is a miniature prototype of a weapon, developed by a company who saw the rise of the robots coming, and were hell-bent on stopping it. The anonymous letter that arrived with the weapon explained that the weapon would release a ray capable of frying the circuitry of any machine caught in its beam. The creators seemed to have possess a flair for the theatrical, as the prototype seems to be modeled on the ray-guns that were much beloved in pulp science fiction. The production of the weapon was halted after a series of accidents and mysterious deaths led to the dissolution of the company. Although the prototype is too small to accommodate a power supply, it has within it all the parts needed to create a normal-sized, fully functional version. If we can get it to those with the knowledge and resources to mass-produce this device, we may yet turn the tide of this war and save mankind!
Team – OD
Od is a fully-developed, non-lunar werewolf bent on fighting against technarchy. He’s been involved with an organization that’s been warning people of the possibility of a robot uprising for years, but when shit actually started going down most of the other Primi-Anarcho-Werewolves went off to the woods.
Od refused to leave and decided to take action with another PAW member who also didn’t want to run off. Their mission was to free a few of the robots’ captives, but Od’s friend was assimilated before any of the captives could be free save one notoriously violent transhumanarcho-terrorist with a cybernetic arm, implanted by robot rebels: Gen, a (mostly) human contact point for the few robot rebels who had militantly opposed the robot hierarchy and their attempts at destroying humanity. Gen had been double-crossed by his contact point, who’d been discovered and reprogrammed, and Gen had been imprisoned by the robots with the intention of getting robo-rebel intelligence from him.
While Gen and Od were escaping, they noticed a strange girl who kept following them, but who would never approach. Thinking she was a robot, they tried capturing her, but she continued to evade them. Finally, after a few nights of travel, they become less wary of her presence after Nez gave Od a note, written in binary, they later translated as “Must find the professor.”
Nez’s father was a professor who used her for research; he wanted to discover if a child raised without human interaction would be able to speak what he considered “the divine language”–which he thought would explain the origin of human life. During that time, the only living contact she was allowed was that of her companion dog, 01001111 01100100 01101001 01100101. She escaped and ran away when she was seven. Nez was instructed by robots in binary and is incredibly intelligent, but largely indifferent to the survival of the human species, and only focused on finding “the professor,” presumably for revenge. She carries a notebook she is always scribbling in and trusts no one.
As they continue on their journey, Od reunites with Nerdlips, a super genius and incredible tinker who’s been surviving off her wits for years. Before the robots began to assimilate the humans, Od had recognized Nerdlips‘ abilities and wanted to pursue some projects with her, as well as a romantic relationship. Nerdlips decided it was probably better than dying.
Team – OD’s Items
1) Nez’s item is a thesis she is writing on binary code and why it helps the human mind learn more effectively. She plans to give a finished copy to the spaceship’s captain, and the original to her father, the professor, before she kills him.
2) EMP-emitting device contained in (but not attached to) Gen’s cybernetic arm
3) a map of robot hives
4) X-Ray Specs
5) iPod, equipped with lock-bypassing software and Kei$ha
Team – Ambivalent no More!
This team came together at a Chicago institution with a notoriously ambivalent relationship to play: The University of Chicago. Exhausted by the competitive grind of course work, dissatisfied by the all too briefly ludic period of Scav, this team decided there was only one alternative: escaping the robotic production of academia. This team is accustomed to watching comrades fall, one by one, into the hands of the robots, and is not afraid to leave behind members who succumb to the safety of the robotic hoard.
Team UIC’s Item
If we make it to the ship, we bring with us tools afforded by time spent at the University: we are programmers, artists, and literary analysts, as ready to create as we are to deconstruct.
Team – Dave’s Friend
There is no backstory needed for eternal friends.
Team – Dave’s Friend’s Item
Team – New Zero Day
This group of Loyola students spent the opening hours of Zero Day hiding in the basement of their dorm. As the roar of fighter jets and artillery sounded around them, it felt like the world was ending a thousand times a second. When the dawn broke on the third day, the silence was almost deafening. As they peered through the rubble at the ruins of the city, they knew their world had changed forever. Humanity was no longer the dominant species. So they waited, and watched. And listened. Living among the ruins of the Loyola campus for the months and years after Zero Day, they observed.
And when the moment was right, they struck back, rising up against the machines that picked through the bones of this once-great city. Their attacks were small at first, the destruction of a processing hub, sabotaging a K-bot plant, cutting power relays. But their attacks escalated quickly, in frequency and intensity. As did the responses.
After having lost an entire cell to a BFS attack, this plucky band of rebels knew it was time to go big or go home. And they went big. Striking out against three locations at once, they succeeded in obscuring their real target: the main processing hub for the Great Lakes region. They struck hard and fast, using hot-wired armored trucks to maximum effect. Their homemade EMP bombs blasted holes through the robot’s ranks, but the machines’ numbers seemed endless. Just as all seemed lost, and their final stand was being overwhelmed, they came upon their prize: an intact machine Databrain, critical for the operation of the robot’s infrastructure. As the remnants of the resistance fell back to their headquarters, they knew the machines would bring everything to bear in order to retrieve their captured leader. The resistance needed to escape, needed to flee the city. Desperately running from the encroaching robot hordes, with no safe places left to go, this group has only one clear directive: bring the Databrain to someone who can unlock its secrets. There’s gotta be someone out there who can do it, right?
Team – New Zero Day’s Item
One (1): Archos B-class Level 3 Databrain. The programming power required to unlock its secrets is currently beyond the ability of this group to provide. The complete memory of the Databrain has been copied to three (3) standard CDs in case of some unforeseen accident should take the current Databrain out of commission. The secrets locked inside this ‘Brain are of vital significance to the human resistance, and must be transported to the last holdout deep in the Welsh countryside.
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